Ashara Mubaraka 1445 H
Dubai, UAE


Over the past several weeks, the Dawoodi Bohra community in the UAE has been a hive of activity preparing for Ashara Mubaraka, the annual Muharram congregations, to be held this year in Dubai.

The upcoming event, taking place in the UAE after a span of 20 years, marks a momentous milestone in the history of the Dawoodi Bohra community. It is a testament to the community’s commitment to upholding their Islamic traditions and faith, which form the very essence of their beliefs and practices.


Ashara Mubaraka is a period of ten days at the start of the Islamic New Year dedicated to remembering the Holy Prophet Muhammad , his grandson Imam Husain and Ahle Bayt and their valorous stand for the universal values of justice, truth and humanity. For the Dawoodi Bohras, these Muharram congregations are akin to a spiritual, educational and material journey of growth and development.

The Dawoodi Bohra community under the guidance and leadership of the 53rd Sultan al Bohra Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin dedicates these learning sessions as a means to reinvigorate the community’s path as it navigates the many challenges and complexities that modern life presents. The sermons inspire community members to seek knowledge from the light of the Holy Quran and strive to emulate the noble qualities of the Prophet  and Ahle Bayt .

Every Dawoodi Bohra community centre across the world marks the event with a series of congregations over ten days covering various themes, for its local congregation. Community members close shops and businesses and take leave from school and work to participate in Ashara Mubaraka, which indicates how integral they see these congregations to their faith. 

The largest gathering within the community takes place at the venue where Sultan al Bohra Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin leads the congregations. Continuing the time-honoured tradition of his forefathers, Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin chooses a different city each year as the venue for Ashara Mubaraka. These congregations are conducted at a scale like no other and offer an unparalleled experience for the many who attend.

Among the numerous benefits for the host city is the transformation of the selected location into a cultural hub for the Dawoodi Bohra community. The presence of Syedna, the influx of thousands of visitors and the coordination and cooperation with local and national governmental bodies elevates the local community’s standing.


This year Dubai has been chosen by Sultan al Bohra Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin to host the Ashara Mubaraka congregations. That this event is being held here is a testament to the cordial relationship between the community and the Government of Dubai and the UAE, as well as their mutual respect for all faiths and cultures.

Around 73,000 Dawoodi Bohra community members from the UAE and across the world are expected to come together to acquire knowledge and participate in a series of congregations that will focus on remembering the sacrifices of Imam Husain and the Ahle Bayt in Karbala as well as personal and spiritual growth and development. The central venue for the congregations will be Burhani Community Center in Al-Qusais, Dubai. Live relay will be broadcast to other centres being set up in other parts of the UAE including the World Trade Centre and community centres in Deira, Sharjah, Abu Dhabi & Ajman. Additionally, community members, both residents and visitors, in the neighbouring countries of Kuwait, Bahrain and Oman will also have the opportunity to benefit from the live telecast.

Inspiring Teamwork

One of the most notable features of Ashara Mubaraka is that it is almost completely organised and executed by a force of volunteer community members. From technical tasks and artistic endeavours to managing the flow and serving meals, Dawoodi Bohras from across the world converge at the host city in a unique display of teamwork joining forces with their hosts in their preparations.

Community volunteers were a source of inspiration as they stood for hours in the sweltering heat to manage the flow of community members.
Community members ensured that waste was segregated after each community meal and transported to its designated station for reuse.

Aligning with the Goals of COP28

Inspired by the Islamic philosophy of preserving and enhancing the environment, the Dawoodi Bohras place great emphasis on environmental responsibility and action. Policies and frameworks are being laid down throughout the congregations, and volunteers are assigned tasks to ensure a zero-waste and sustainable event. Dedicated efforts are being made and specialised agencies are being identified to provide solutions and alternatives to waste management in line with the UAE’s “Year of Sustainability” commitment and supporting the Emirates’ vision of environmental dialogue at COP28.

Promoting Health and Wellness

Additionally, medical tents will be set up where local doctors and medical professionals will provide free medical assistance to visitors and conduct workshops on improving mental and physical well-being.

Special camps were set up at common points to avail medical services.

The UAE government’s support for hosting Ashara Mubaraka extends well beyond simply providing a venue for the event. The government has demonstrated its commitment to promoting peaceful coexistence and interfaith dialogue by facilitating logistics, ensuring the smooth execution of the event, and providing approvals for setting up the temporary infrastructure needed to accommodate the congregation. The community expresses its deep appreciation for the UAE’s generous support in creating a warm and welcoming environment for the congregation.


In 2022, Sultan al Bohra Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin selected London, United Kingdom, as the venue for his Ashara Mubaraka sermons. 

More than 12,500 community members attended this historic event observed for the first time in Europe. Throughout the event, volunteers implemented sustainable practices to realise the fourth successful ‘zero-waste’ Ashara Mubaraka event.

In 2021, Sultan al Bohra Syedna Saifuddin chose the Nairobi campus of Aljamea-tus-Saifiyah as the venue for Ashara Mubaraka. The event was historic in many aspects as it marked the first time that Ashara Mubaraka was hosted by Aljamea-tus-Saifiyah, the community’s premier educational institute.

In times of difficulty and adversity, Sultan al Bohra’s administration mobilised thousands of volunteers across the world to help individual households observe the ten-day event. Sermons were broadcast to every single Bohra household and hundreds of thousands of Dawoodi Bohras participated in this event in a manner never witnessed before. Sultan al Bohra presided over the event at his own residence in Khandala on the outskirts of Mumbai with his close family.

At the invitation of the Sri Lankan government in 2019, Sultan al Bohra Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin chose the capital Colombo as the venue for the Ashara Mubaraka sermons. The large influx of community members helped rejuvenate Sri Lanka’s economy and was the Dawoodi Bohra community’s statement of faith and confidence in the country and the versatility of its people.

Ashara Mubaraka in 2018 in Indore was also ground-breaking in many ways. It saw the largest congregation of Dawoodi Bohras for the event to date, totalling nearly 210,000 people. On the 4th of Muharram, Sultan al Bohra welcomed the Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi to the Ashara Mubaraka assembly in which both he and the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, Shri Shivraj Singh Chouhan, participated in the majlis and addressed the gathering.

In 2017, Sultan al Bohra Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin conducted the sermons in Karachi, Pakistan. Nearly 60,000 community members from across the globe gathered in the heart of the city’s business district where the community’s central masjid is located for the period of ten days. Sultan al Bohra was presented with the Key to Karachi by Mayor Waseem Akhtar during the ten day event. 

In 2016, Sultan al Bohra selected Dar es Salaam, the capital of Tanzania, as the venue for the Ashara Mubaraka gathering attended by over 30,000 community members. The President of Tanzania, the late John Magufuli, called on Sultan al Bohra at the Ashara venue and addressed the gathering.

In 2015, Sultan al Bohra was invited to Houston, USA, where he delivered sermons to an audience of over 25,000: the largest community event to have ever taken place in the West.

Upon ascending to the leadership mantle of the community in 2014, Sultan al Bohra Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin conducted his inaugural Ashara Mubaraka as head of the community in Surat, his city of birth, attended by over 100,000 individuals.